First off, Happy Holidays to everyone on this Friday!
Tomorrow is Boxing Day, which means a full slate of matches to catch in the Premier League. After suffering just their second defeat in league play at home to Newcastle, Tottenham got back to their winning ways last week with a 2-0 victory over Southampton. Tomorrow, Spurs will welcome Norwich City to White Hart Lane on Matchday 18.
Tottenham currently sit fourth in the table, level with Manchester United on 29 points but enjoy a six goal advantage in goal differential over the Red Devils. In this wide open league, every point is crucial in not only the race for the top four, but for the title as well.
Norwich City pulled themselves out of the relegation zone last week and simultaneously helped Tottenham by defeating United on the road, 2-1. Cameron Jerome and Alexander Tettey scored the goals that pushed the Canaries to their victory and earned them a crucial three points, who now sit in 16th place on 17 points, two clear of the danger zone and one point behind Chelsea.
Tottenham will be the favorites in this match, but Norwich City are coming off of a huge victory and will have some momentum as they travel to North London. Can Spurs put some distance between themselves and the rest of the table to keep in the top four?
How to Watch
Date/time: Saturday, December 26, 3:00 p.m. (UK), 10:00 a.m. ET (USA)
Venue: White Hart Lane, London, UK
Official: Mike Jones (Active since 2008, 155 matches, 502 Yellow Cards, 23 Red Cards)
TV: NBC Sports Premier League Extra Time [the bonus channels] (USA), not televised (UK), TSN4 (Canada), Fox Sports 5 (Australia), other listings at livesoccertv.com
Streaming: NBCS Live Extra (USA)
Radio: Audio streamed at tottenhamhotspur.com, also BBC Radio London and TalkSport
The only real question for the lineup tomorrow is where Mousa Dembele and Dele Alli will play. I won't be surprised to see their positions flipped or have them rotate throughout the match, but the safe bet is to expect Dembele playing behind Kane with Eriksen out left and Lamela out right. Alli will line up next to Dier in the pivot and nothing should change in the back four as Rose, Vertonghen, Alderweireld, and Walker have shown to be the first choice in defense in front of Hugo Lloris.
Only Salmon Chase managed to correctly predict the 2-0 scoreline last week, with much of the Masthead at least picking up a point for predicting a Spurs victory. Here are your standings as of Matchday 17 and the predictions for the match tomorrow:
|Earl of Shoop||4|
Michael Caley: Norwich aren't good, and whatever problems may come from Poche not rotating aren't likely to hit yet.Spurs 2-0.
Bryan A.: This will be harder than we expect because Spurs will have a horrible day when it comes to finishing off chances. Fortunately, Norwich play Cameron Jerome. 1-0 Spurs.
GN Punk: I need to channel The New Day and their Power of Positivity from here on out. Even with Norwich getting three points at Old Trafford last week, Spurs are still a better team. This will probably be closer than it should be but Spurs will get all three points. 2-1 Spurs.
Mechanick: Always have to look out for Grant Holt when you're playing Norwich... Oh wait, he doesn't play for The Canaries anymore, and they're crap? Nevermind, Harry Kane finna drop a brace on them. 2-0 Spurs
Ed F.: Harry Kane 3-1 Norwich.
Skipjack: 2-2 because Eric Dier is on a naughty list
Dustin Menno: Blah blah blah canaries in a coal mine blah blah blah dead canaries joke here blah blah blah Norwich suck. 2-0 Spurs.
Brett Rainbow: Spurs 2-0. Norwich aren't good, and whatever problems may come from Poche not rotating aren't likely to hit yet.
Ben Daniels: Norwich is dumb. 3-0 Spurs.
55thVin: It's Jan and Toby Toby (3x)/ they good for xG! Key to our side, our side, our side, our side! High line, high line, high line c'mon! 3-0 Spurs
Earl of Shoop: Norwich, you say? I recently drove past a place called Norwich, Ohio, which I assume is named for Norwich, England. However, this fine Ohio settlement appears to have a much richer history:
Norwich City Football Club are as bad as that historical marker and are now even without the talents of such footballing luminaries as Robert Snodgrass and Grant Holt. Spurs run away with the win, 3-1.
Luke Zimmerman: Cameron Jerome is no match for an egg nog fueled Sonny and co. 3-1 Spurs.
Matthew Pachniuk: Well rested & healthy. Tottenham Hotspur are good at football, Norwich not so much. They also have terrible kits. Spurs roll 3-0.
Jake Meador: Spurs 2-0 Norwich. Kane with a brace.
Salmon Chase: As I sit here in the "club" section of this particular Dominican resort, which happens to have a quote from Eddie Money posted over its main entrance(of the resort not just this room). I remember the important things this time of year brings to mind. Like Norwich eating a big shit sandwich. (Which at Le Salmon Chase Brasseire will be known as "Le Eddie Money Quote") 3-0 Spurs